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Muriel Gerard

Muriel B. Gerard

Wednesday, January 27th, 1926 - Friday, April 26th, 2019
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Obituary

Muriel B. Gerard, 93, of Winter Springs, Florida joined her loved ones in heaven on April 26, 2019.

Muriel was born in Throggs Neck, Bronx, New York on January 27, 1926 to Jacob and Catherine Lichtenberger. She was the youngest of seven children, 2 sisters and 4 brothers, all pre-deceased.

At an early age, Muriel took to performing in dance and together with her sister, Beatrice, danced throughout the New York Metropolitan area known as “The Light Sisters”. Muriel began teaching dance while in high school which later became her legacy.

Following her graduation from Aquinas High School in 1943, Muriel worked for her father in the office of Lichtenberger Plumbing & Heating in New York. She also worked for the U.S. Civil Service Commission as a typist and dictaphone operator. She entertained at U.S.O.’s in the New York area for servicemen in World War II, and joined the touring group of the Roxyettes, the forerunners and inspiration for the Rockettes.

She jointly operated Studio B Dance School with her sister Bea until she married J. Robert “Bob” Bradshaw, June 24, 1950. Once married, Muriel opened Studio B Music and Dance School in New Jersey touching thousands of lives with her many musical talents. She performed in and directed shows for St. Mary’s Church, Dumont, NJ, local temples and schools, and the Bergen County Players in Oradell, NJ. She sang with Ben Intorre Orchestras and coached and judged cheerleading competitions. She also attended school part-time at Bergen Community College and earned her Associates degree in 1985.

Muriel and Bob had seven children, 6 girls and one boy, before she was widowed in March of 1975. She remarried September 4, 1981 to Alvin G. Gerard, who had 2 sons and 2 daughters. She was widowed again when Al passed away in June of 2000.

Following her retirement from teaching music and dance, Muriel and Al moved to Florida in 1988 where she became heavily involved in the church community. She taught in the literacy program through Holy Name of Jesus Church, Indialantic and was the director of many shows and fundraisers. Muriel was also a lector and trained their teen lectors who achieved awards for their oratory skills.

At Holy Name of Jesus, and later at St. Stephen’s Catholic Community, Winter Springs she served as a Eucharistic Minister and minister to the sick. She was also a member of the choir at both churches and directed many pageants.

Muriel also entertained by playing the piano and singing at local area nursing homes and senior residences.

She is survived by her seven children: Barbara-Jo Rieck, Joyce Dolan, Debra Powell, Diane Bradshaw, Patricia Bradshaw, Jack Bradshaw and Kathleen Kaine. She is also survived by her four stepchildren: Kenneth Gerard, Gwenn Gilmore, Dr. Eric Grossmann and Denise Grossmann and a combined total of 26 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
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Service Details

  • Service

    Friday, July 5th, 2019 | 11:00am
    When
    Friday, July 5th, 2019 11:00am
    Location
    St. Stephens Catholic Community Church
    Address
    575 Tuskawilla Road
    WINTER SPRINGS, FL 32708
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    A second Funeral Mass will be held at 8:30 am, July 8, 2019 at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church.

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JT

Jennifer Tancredi

Posted at 12:43pm
You will certainly be missed Mrs. B! You made such an impact in my life and am grateful to have known you. Thank you for making me the best tap dancer I could be. It makes me happy to think you will be looking down watching out for us all. As in true Studio B fashion, "It's been good to know you" (I can't hear you!). To the Bradshaw family, you are in my thoughts and prayers. Sincerely, Jen Tancredi

Patricia Bradshaw

Posted at 07:16am
Muriel Florence Agnes Lichtenberger Bradshaw Gerard

Quite a moniker for quite a lady. She Truly was One of a Kind. 

The youngest of 7 children, she was a daughter
a sister
a mother
Step mother
an aunt
a grandmother
a great-grandmother
a teacher
and a friend

A devout Catholic who did her best to raise all her children as such in This very church.  She finally settled for each of us having a faith and knowing, in times of trouble, God was always there to answer our prayers. Sometimes the answer was "No" but we should always just trust that He had a plan and we needed to trust in Him.  She would attend another denominations service with us, as long as there was a Catholic sevice available for her to go to that day, as well.

She lead by example. Completing all but one of the 7 sacraments.  She may not have become a priest but she did play a nun and cast her only living son as Jesus in the Living Last Supper, a ministry she created for her church's down in Florida.

She taught us all to give of ourselves. Even if we weren't able to give from our purse.  All 7 of us know how to jump in and help out and don't hesitate to do so.

She never gave up, no matter how high the deck seemed to be stacked against her.  Her faith always seemed to pull her through. 

We were devastated when we lost our Dad so unexpectedly in 1975, but Mom was determined to keep us all together.  If this was Gods plan, she would make it work. 

She built up her Music and Dance Studio into a full time business.  Choreographed and directed shows for various groups and sang with a band.

If we needed braces, we got them.
If we wanted to go to college, she made sure, somehow, we got there.  Knowing how important a college education was, she even put herself through.  With all she had going on, it may have taken a number of years to earn her 2 yr Business degree, but she never gave up. You might say, she was "Always Chasing Rainbows."

Known for her strong faith, whenever any one of us had a "Big Ask" we always called in Mom.  Somehow , her prayers seemed to carry more weight.  Whether she was putting the Blessed Virgin in the window to pray for good weather for an important event or to help one of us through a devastating loss or medical emergency,  we all took great comfort in knowing Mom was on our side.

Well God, she's on your side now.  I've always taken great comfort in knowing my Dad and Grandparents were always watching out for me.  The fact that Mom's up there now too?
Look out world!

I had the privilege of spending Mom's last few days with her. She never wanted to be a burden and hated to ask for help.  Her answer to anything she couldn't handle was to put it in Gods hands and she encouraged all of us to do the same.

She was not afraid to die.  She has always known she was going to a better place and started planning for it 15 or 20 years ago.  Like any Studio B Production, she planned every detail, including costumes. We were not to dress in black to mourn her leaving us but in the style of the day to celebrate where she is now..

 I was constantly amazed by her strength and determination.   If God wasn't ready for her yet, she was gonna give it all she had and make every effort to live her best life, until she could finally wake up with the angels, at the end of the Rainbow,  Hopefully ...with that Bluebird in hand.

In her last few hours, as she constantly blessed herself, I did my best to pray the rosary, as I knew she took great comfort in that.  She kept bringing my hand to her lips.  It wasn't until later that night that I realized, though I may not have been counting, Im pretty sure she kissed my hand 7 times.  I believe she wanted us all to know:

We all would have,

 All her Love, Always.


 

Patricia Bradshaw

Posted at 06:28am
This is a tribute dance and slide show my daughter and I performed for Mom at my recital. We love you Mom.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/2292135840999276/permalink/2331495620396631/
GB

Ginny Blass

Posted at 08:07am
Dear Joyce and Bryan,
I send my condolences to you and all of your family at the loss of your dear mom. I just read about her life. Amazing, gifted, generous, loving, caring!!! She touched the lives of so many.
Continued blessings to you as you gather again to offer a beautiful farewell in remembrance. Abundant peace to you all.

Donna Swessel

Posted at 12:11pm
To all my cousins, I am so sorry for your loss. Missing your mom and thinking of all of you! Love, Donna
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